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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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If you are unhappy, believe it stems from living in this municipality, and you would be happy somewhere else?you should move to another city as soon as you can. Life is too short, you owe nothing to JC. If it is financial with the taxes, unfortunately finances are usually non-negotiable. It doesn?t matter what other people think, your perspective/happiness is all that matters. If the majority of your negative experience stems from a bad experience with a developer/condo purchase and there are other redeeming qualities that you like here, you should try to parse that out. Not all developers in JC are bad, I have had a good experience. I do feel some of the negatives you mentioned with JC, for me the positives outweigh the negatives at this point in my life. When I come back from out of town it hits me every time when I come through the 14C tolls and round the bend on the elevated turnpike extension?I love living here.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 18:19
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I use to own and loved my neighborhood in the Heights - but I saw the taxes coming up and wasn't willing to live/adjust/accept my investment (money/personal well-being) was part of a very corrupt system. NYC, Hoboken, LA, Miami, DC, Brooklyn...you name it - there is corruption but at least stuff moves forward, faster than this place.

Also, one day I realized 'Why am i being so stubborn - no one gives me extra brownie points for living this way? Why am I making life so freaking hard to enjoy?'.

Sold my place, now I rent and next year I'm moving to NYC after 6 years in JC. I'm single, don't have any kids, don't need a car, don't work a 9 to 5, my investments are in two businesses, don't originate from Jersey at all, my office is in the city and so are the majority of my friends. My personal circumstances - which aren't going to change in the next 10 years - are different to others though. I think many people should live in Jersey City and they actually might get more out of it than I can.

creativeconquests - It's ok to realize you are a square peg trying to shove yourself in a round hole if that be the case.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 18:15
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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Quote:

creativeconquests wrote:
I appreciate the posts. I don't know if it's enough to come around. Maybe I'm just not adult enough to lump the realities of losing so much money in a fraudulent purchase, manipulative builders, corrupt government, apathetic strata councils hoping problems just dissolve, and people who walk through doors talking on their cell phones when I open them and can bare to whisper a thank you, ....I understand why many of my peers remain in this area for a 5-7 year period and then leave. They make their money and take off, or have their babies and move away. Something happens to YOU, not necessarily the city changes - what is that saying, "leave New York before it makes you hard?"''Leave LA before it makes you soft". I am not young anymore and not as eager to take on the world. But I don't want to force myself to be inspired when what I see around me are people taking advantage of the system, ripping other people off, corruption....

I just see city workers with short term memories screwing me over and again, I hate (and rarely) play the victim, but in the situations I've experienced I can't believe the truth isn't good enough.

I am not naive to think other city's are better, I just know I've lived in them, and they have their flaws but there's an overall goodness that prevails. People smile. Say thank you. Dignity prevails. Again, nothing has changed here but my perception and the size of my bank account thanks to these taxes. Steven Fulop seems to be a great person. Does he to therapy sessions too?



I agree with you that there is a loss of dignity that occurs after living in JC a few years. I moved here from Boston, having previously lived in New Hampshire. Those are places where the government is more or less on your side, where new contruction luxury condos are actually luxury condos, not shoddy gut jobs with Ikea cabinets. I'm glad I didn't buy anything in 2005, because now I'd be stuck.

On the other hand, living in JC instead of Manhattan has allowed me to accumulate a lot of savings. Back in 2005 a one bedroom in JC seemed like a stretch financially. Now one bedroom condos in manhattan seem doable. That wouldn't have been possible without my 5 years in JC. I was hoping JC could become an urban alternative to Manhattan. But really, JC combines all the worst attributes of NYC with all the worst attributes of NJ. You aren't getting the best of both worlds, you are getting the worst of both.

But, living here is OK as a renter. PATH is OK except at 3 AM. A stroll to Toricos in summer is a joy. My gym is conveniently located across the street from my apartment. But I won't be investing in Real Estate here. I'll move before I give these crooks 10k a year in property taxes. No thank you. If you buy a place in JC you are basically signing on to be abused by your representatives. Its a cruel joke. Even though I rent I go to the assembly meetings. I'm glad people are stirring the pot, but I don't think there is enough critical mass.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 17:53
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I'd be curious to know what section of the city the very frustrated people on this thread, who have left or are contemplating leaving, are living?

I realize that crime, grime, questionable construction and bad PATH service are fairly ubiquitous .... but high taxes aren't .... We will not buy a place with taxes over $3600/yr. This amount both rules out and rules in a number of areas. Downtown -out! JC Heights - part in/part out. JSQ, McGuinley Square, Lincoln Park - all ruled in.
Even parts of Bergen Lafayette and Greenville have outrageous taxes and are ruled out by our equation.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 17:38
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I appreciate the posts. I don't know if it's enough to come around. Maybe I'm just not adult enough to lump the realities of losing so much money in a fraudulent purchase, manipulative builders, corrupt government, apathetic strata councils hoping problems just dissolve, and people who walk through doors talking on their cell phones when I open them and can bare to whisper a thank you, ....I understand why many of my peers remain in this area for a 5-7 year period and then leave. They make their money and take off, or have their babies and move away. Something happens to YOU, not necessarily the city changes - what is that saying, "leave New York before it makes you hard?"''Leave LA before it makes you soft". I am not young anymore and not as eager to take on the world. But I don't want to force myself to be inspired when what I see around me are people taking advantage of the system, ripping other people off, corruption....

I just see city workers with short term memories screwing me over and again, I hate (and rarely) play the victim, but in the situations I've experienced I can't believe the truth isn't good enough.

I am not naive to think other city's are better, I just know I've lived in them, and they have their flaws but there's an overall goodness that prevails. People smile. Say thank you. Dignity prevails. Again, nothing has changed here but my perception and the size of my bank account thanks to these taxes. Steven Fulop seems to be a great person. Does he to therapy sessions too?


Posted on: 2010/2/4 16:58
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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don't give up! "Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!" we too are frustrated and scared about the coming tax issues. we too don't like the corruption issues. we too don't like kids killing kids. but, we love jersey city.

the people who try to paint the rosy picture of what JC used to be are a tad delusional. it's always been gritty, rough, working-class, and full of corruption in government. as much as some people around here would like to try and portray it as a new phenomenon, it is NOT a new thing. does that make it right? of course not, and i'm not saying it should be ignored.

as a few people have mentioned, downtown does have tons more short-term types who may not care about the process. jersey city is such a huge city, and the concerns of all the other wards are so different than downtown's concerns, that it should be easy to see why some old-timers get cranky at the demands of the downtowners. and even though lots of people on this list hate the current administration, the bottom line is, they were voted into office. period. if you want to vote them out, go for it, but it takes people getting involved, and not just yelling at each other on a message board.

having said all that, we love it here. we looked in the suburbs years ago when we were stopping renting and looking to buy... sure, we would've loved to move to Montclair, but we couldnt afford those taxes (which are still worse than ours), and the commute would've been twice as long. our neighborhood was pretty sketchy when we moved in, but the police were great (and other departments in the city), and through active people on our block, we got rid of the scumbags, drug dealers and gangsters. easy? no. scary? at times. worth it for everyone to try and stick through it? not necessarily. my wife and i are both pretty stubborn, and we weren't going to let scumbags ruin our life. our neighbors who moved in shortly after us, couldn't take it and left.

would we like things to be better here? of course, which is why we participate in the voting process, and community activities. and i would love if someone like mike bloomberg came to run the place...

your jersey city can be great if you make it that way!

Posted on: 2010/2/4 15:25
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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Quote:

Crazy_Chester wrote:
Apparently, this is a statewide phenomenon:

http://www.nj.com/business/index.ssf/ ... 0b_in_wealth_over_fo.html


You are definitely not alone: http://escapefromjersey.blogspot.com/

Posted on: 2010/2/4 14:45
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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mendezia wrote:
If I wasn't sitting on a condo I paid too much for and now can't get rid of, I'd be outta here too.


Sometimes quality of life is worth taking a financial hit for. We lost 40K when we sold our condo.
The good news is that if you buy another place right away, you really aren't taking a loss. The market is down everywhere. You just have to sell and buy in the same market. The mortgage rates are pretty sweet right now too.
Test the waters and put your place on the market - spring is near. If you don't get a desirable offer you don't have to go anywhere.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 14:38
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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Posted on: 2010/2/4 14:14
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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If I wasn't sitting on a condo I paid too much for and now can't get rid of, I'd be outta here too.

Posted on: 2010/2/4 3:03
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I have all the same issues, PATH, taxes, flooding....on top of that I'm in a small condo where the other owners are not rich either and the building is deteriorating and probably not much will be done about it. On top of that all the neighborhood dogs seem to want to attack my pomeranian. It's very easy to get depressed, but I try to remind myself that there's no point. I just have to accept the situation and hope that the real estate prices turn around at some point in the next 10 years. I have my moments where I just want to walk away, but there are some really good neighbors (the ones without pitbulls, that want to eat my dog) , so one day at a time.

Venting helps. Maybe we should start a meetup "JC Homeowners - Misery Loves Company"

Posted on: 2010/2/4 2:41
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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DCofJC wrote:
Do what your heart tells you, but I will say....

there are a lot of people around here that do amzing things. A lot of people give a damn. Surround yourselves with those people. I highly recommend you volunteer for someone like say....Steve Fulop. He cares. He calls people out on the things you despise. Or look at the type of people he surrounds himself with. I rarely say this about any politician, but I believe he could change this city, and he already has.

I personally have the luxury of spending time with people that care. Business owners, artists, developers, community activists, and they need help, or input. If you have the time to help these people, and actually spend time with these people, you will find that positive things are happening all around us. There's a looooong way to go, and there are struggles but it's like rooting for the underdog.


Thanks for that post. You are right. I am using all my time, energy & money towards the issues I encountered in my home based on city and builder negligence (a story I won't go in to, too private, too stressful, just trust me when I say due diligence was done). Before this occurred, my first two weeks of initial bliss moving here I was going to volunteer for the Embankment cause, I was going to the council meetings, I was GUNG-HO! My spirit and wallet have died over the course of 3 years....

Posted on: 2010/2/3 22:06
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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Do what your heart tells you, but I will say....

there are a lot of people around here that do amzing things. A lot of people give a damn. Surround yourselves with those people. I highly recommend you volunteer for someone like say....Steve Fulop. He cares. He calls people out on the things you despise. Or look at the type of people he surrounds himself with. I rarely say this about any politician, but I believe he could change this city, and he already has.

I personally have the luxury of spending time with people that care. Business owners, artists, developers, community activists, and they need help, or input. If you have the time to help these people, and actually spend time with these people, you will find that positive things are happening all around us. There's a looooong way to go, and there are struggles but it's like rooting for the underdog.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 21:42
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I would stay if I was a renter. But as of now I will be paying huge property taxes and dealing with the city as an owner in JC is by far the most frustrating experience I've ever had in my lifetime. If I had the time and energy to share the stories, I'm sure other homeowners could tell me the same. The city does not work for the taxpayer. It's beyond shocking. I have experienced with the city (particularly the permit and codes department) crooked behavior, illegal situations, contradictions of huge proportions, negligence at the risk of myself and my family.

If only I was renting I'd love this city and let go of the feeling I need to depend on the city in some manner. I'd use the area for it's nice parks, location to Manhattan, play with the people I've met, I'd invest in it without putting my blood, sweat and money of huge proportions. You caught me on a bad day, sigh. I've never run from anything but this is a fight that gives me so much fatigue and angst, I'd rather sell and live somewhere else. I'm looking.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 21:12
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I love Jersey City.
I lived in Hoboken from 1989 - 2008, when I moved to JC.
My fiance and I have been actively shopping for a condo here. This is proving to be a demoralizing experience because what we can rent is a lot nicer than what we can buy. I was excited that with the r/e price drops that we could buy something really nice but that is not proving to be true when we factor personal safety into the equation. I feel like we see some cool properties and then plug the address into various crime stat reports to be horrified. (this is assuming we live in a part of the city with "affordable" taxes). I'm not sure if the problem is that I read too many blogs or if we just need to rent a while more.
Regardless of if we decide to rent or buy, we definitely definitely want to stay in JC for its diversity, vibrancy, proximity to NYC, architecture, cheaper cost of living (other than taxes), nice parks.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 20:45
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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A lot of things here are much worse than they should be and much of it traces back to our nightmare local government. As much as the "born and raiseds" will say "it's always been this way" and "that's Jersey City", I'm fortunate not to be so burdened since I moved here only five years ago. I truly believe that we are turning a corner, that a critical mass of people have reached the point where they are willing to demand better and do the work to make it happen.

The seas of change are building - the first wave was the arrests last summer. The second was Christie's election. The third was the tax increase. The next could be the looming reval or a big drop in state aid to the schools. Whatever it is, the waves will keep coming. This storm will not end soon.

There are a lot of people who, like me, aren'd saddled with the baggage of JC history and we consider that to be a luxury. We've seen things work elsewhere and know that much of what goes on here is patently wrong and also fixable.

Other places have come back from even worse circumstances and JC can too. It won't happen overnight, but I don't think it'll take ten years either. Christie may end up being a disaster as governor in many regards, but even destructive forces can be beneficial (think forest fires.) Already, he has begun laying the groundwork for dismantling the self-dealing, cronyistic system that has been in place for as long as anyone can remember.

I plan to stay and fight, as tempting as it is to flee some days. I like to think that there are enough like me (and I am meeting more and more every day) to take back the city from the mouth-breathing thugs in City Hall and begin to do the real work of making this place what it can and should be.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 19:47
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I think you expressed the opinion of many metro NY residents.
So its not just Jersey City. As a recent transplant from "brownstone" Brooklyn, I find living in Jersey City a lot easier and way more affordable (but yes we're renting again).

But I feel your pain. I'm generally beginning to think one has to be crazy or super rich to live in the NY metro area.
My 25 year old self would shoot me right now for saying this.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 19:04
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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What are you looking for, and where would you go?

Could you be so burned by your real-estate situation that you would give up things you clearly like about JC? I moved to The Heights 1 1/2 years ago from Manhattan because I wanted to buy a place of my own and to feel like a stakeholder in my community, yet still be in a walkable, city environment close enough to New York to get their on the spur of the moment. NYC may be the model of good urban government, and trust me not a day goes by when I don't compare the amenities and access I enjoyed on the Upper West Side to those in the Heights, and think "maybe I just should have stayed". But it is no longer possible to hope to live as a homeowner in NYC if you aren't employed on Wall Street or have rich parents, and I am a city boy at heart and at least here in JC I am in it's orbit (as opposed to being in the Bronx or Flatbush...).

If you do decide to move, well best of luck. But my advice is to plan to move closer to something you really want, as opposed to away from something.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 18:37
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I'm a college student and have lived in Downtown Jersey City for over 2 years now. I have voted in every election and been to council meetings. I am a renter, but i plan on someday buying in Jersey City and raising my family here.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 18:28
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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hero69 wrote:
Yes, JC has its problems but every city has problems. Most people everywhere complain about property taxes. The PATH is great compared to the NYC subway. Yes, traveling to 33rd street via Hoboken sucks BUT compare that to the hell of the constant subway train re-routing in Manhattan at night and on weekends.

Jersey City is cool, aside from taxes being raised every now and then life is still pretty much the same. I've been here through no fault of my own seeing that I was here since day one. I know all the ins and outs of J.C., the people, the good places to eat, corner stores to chat about stuff, local parish, decent events, proximity to the city, and other N.J. towns. We have all the major stores, and Hudson County has some really great places to venture out to, and minutes away from the job. Plus I can bike around town, take the PATH and leave the car at home. It's the reason why I never left.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 18:20
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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It's a tough call. 2 nice brownstones have sold around VVP recently. Both were families with children going to greener pastures. That's really discouraging to see.

There is so much opportunity in JC, but it does seem that the machine deliberately keeps it down. You'd think all the arrests would have the council scared, but they know they'll get the votes. Too many people in downtown are renters with no l-t plans to stay; they don't bother to vote.

It's been very frustrating to see all the broken car windows of late around VVP. Are there any beat cops downtown other that at construction sites? This morning the Saffron didn't even have its sidewalks cleared at 9:45AM. Joke.

I'm hopeful, but if the economy continues to flounder JC will revert back to the bad old ways. JC was definitely late catching the brownstone revival wave that got to places like Ft Greene in Brooklyn earlier. We'll see...

Posted on: 2010/2/3 18:18
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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Yes, JC has its problems but every city has problems. Most people everywhere complain about property taxes. The PATH is great compared to the NYC subway. Yes, traveling to 33rd street via Hoboken sucks BUT compare that to the hell of the constant subway train re-routing in Manhattan at night and on weekends.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 18:08
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I love living in Jersey City. Yes property taxes are high and the city goverment is corrupt. But there are alot of positives still going on. Downtown is still seeing development & and hopefully in time we can begin to see the Renassiance of the Journal Square Area.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 17:51
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I like the geography. The location. The park. My friends.

But I paid good money for a bad home the city said was safe and was not. I did my due diligence. I did everything within the power as a citizen, a taxpayer, a resident does to protect themselves, I did what the books tell you, online tells you, Suze Orman tells you, your parents tell you, your intuition tells you but the city did not protect me. I won't go in to detail, but that cost me a bundle of money and now I am hit with more taxes to help a city that is so dysfunctional it cannot help itself?

I can see my money spent better elsewhere where I can witness my taxes at work. I am actively seeking out of this place. And I am dead serious when I say the only catalyst to this was the pathetic realities of how the government system is so corrupt here it costs taxpayers MORE to protect themselves from the system we PAY to protect us.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 17:26
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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creativeconquests wrote:
I'm just surprised at myself. I am truly ready to give up. The fight is gone.

The latest property tax hike has me so incredibly cynical. I received an article from a friend who lives in Northern Canada highlighting how the most corrupt place in the United States is where I live, Jersey City, NJ. We have the worst reputation for paying off our officials. Reputable builders and contractors don't want to work in this area because of the city's reputation for manipulation, corruption and disorganization, pay-off's. Even two state judges I've encountered say you don't want to mess with Jersey City because of their reputation of being corrupt.

Doesn't that mean, anywhere else is better? If I can't trust my hard earned money going to anything I pay for, if I'm paying MORE taxes for this type of corruption to occur, how can I feel confident living here anymore? I honestly feel done. I feel like they've won. I want to live somewhere where I trust my government is doing the job my taxes pay for. I'm not naive, but I'm just used to living where the system works for the citizens a little more than ours.

I can't believe it's 2010 and we are still putting politicians in jail.


It's okay to give up, no one should have to live in a place that they despise. I couldn't stand living in JC anymore. It took 8 months of feeling trapped while trying to sell my place. It felt great to bounce out of there in November...FREEDOM! Now I kind of miss having topics to bitch about. Good luck.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 17:11
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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creativeconquests: I totally hear you. I face the same dilemma myself. On the one hand, I do love what residents and business owners have turned JC into, but on the other I feel that our elected officials are what's holding this city back. The latest property tax bill has just clinched my decision that the cost of owning in this city simply isn't affordable or worth it. And by "cost" I don't just mean dollars, I also mean the emotional toll and stress of dealing with various city agencies for permits and, as you mentioned, less-than-honest contractors. Although I've vowed to join the masses in protesting this latest round of tax increases, I do believe my energy would be better spent getting my home ready for sale and finding a new home. The demeanor of most of the city council members at the last meeting in the face of public outrage was discouraging. They sat there with the arrogance that comes from knowing their jobs are safe, that they'll be re-elected no matter what because, in the end, the machine takes care of them.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 16:09
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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creativeconquests wrote:
I'm just surprised at myself. I am truly ready to give up. The fight is gone.

The latest property tax hike has me so incredibly cynical. I received an article from a friend who lives in Northern Canada highlighting how the most corrupt place in the United States is where I live, Jersey City, NJ. We have the worst reputation for paying off our officials. Reputable builders and contractors don't want to work in this area because of the city's reputation for manipulation, corruption and disorganization, pay-off's. Even two state judges I've encountered say you don't want to mess with Jersey City because of their reputation of being corrupt.

Doesn't that mean, anywhere else is better? If I can't trust my hard earned money going to anything I pay for, if I'm paying MORE taxes for this type of corruption to occur, how can I feel confident living here anymore? I honestly feel done. I feel like they've won. I want to live somewhere where I trust my government is doing the job my taxes pay for. I'm not naive, but I'm just used to living where the system works for the citizens a little more than ours.

I can't believe it's 2010 and we are still putting politicians in jail.


I think it is every man, woman, and child for themselves around here. If you want to vote with your feet, I would not blame you. We are working on an exit strategy, too. Live and learn, as they say.

As much as I admire the folks who show up at city hall to demand change and justice and fairness and whatnot, I think they have entered a gunfight armed only with flyswatters. Who elected the folks on the council, anyway? You get the government you deserve goes the saying. It will be interesting to see if any recall movement gains strength. If not, I would not expect change other than from state/federal intervention. They will wait you out.

I fail to see what is worth the fight around here anyway, other than one's own wallet. Magnificent parkland? Great schools? World class entertainment venues? Fantastic museums? Awesome dining? A thriving arts scene? The stunning architecture? Please.

This city is junior varsity, with a long way to go to match not just New York or Chicago, but Green Bay or Nashville. It is the same dump I swore off in 1991, but with some taller buildings.

Yeah, I know, don't let the door hit us on the way out.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 16:01
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I'm just surprised at myself. I am truly ready to give up. The fight is gone.

The latest property tax hike has me so incredibly cynical. I received an article from a friend who lives in Northern Canada highlighting how the most corrupt place in the United States is where I live, Jersey City, NJ. We have the worst reputation for paying off our officials. Reputable builders and contractors don't want to work in this area because of the city's reputation for manipulation, corruption and disorganization, pay-off's. Even two state judges I've encountered say you don't want to mess with Jersey City because of their reputation of being corrupt.

Doesn't that mean, anywhere else is better? If I can't trust my hard earned money going to anything I pay for, if I'm paying MORE taxes for this type of corruption to occur, how can I feel confident living here anymore? I honestly feel done. I feel like they've won. I want to live somewhere where I trust my government is doing the job my taxes pay for. I'm not naive, but I'm just used to living where the system works for the citizens a little more than ours.

I can't believe it's 2010 and we are still putting politicians in jail.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 15:32
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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JerseyCityFrankie wrote:
But I still see good facets of this town...Things won?t change overnight but I think they are already slowly starting to change.


Can you give an example?

Posted on: 2010/2/3 15:30
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Re: Ready to give up living in this city...
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I can see how the shape of this city can get you down, with all that has slapped it around, closing business, vandalism, break-ins and all that city hall BS, But you have to stay positive. (and maybe not so sarcastic?)

Hopefully things will brighten up as a whole.

Posted on: 2010/2/3 15:30
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